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11 kids, driver hurt in Calif. school bus crash

ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) -- Eleven elementary school students and their driver were injured when a school bus jumped a curb Thursday and rammed into trees in Southern California, authorities said.

Three of the injured - the driver and two of the children - were taken to hospitals in critical condition after the crash, Anaheim police Lt. Bob Dunn said. The other nine students had minor injuries.

Television news reports show the Orange Unified School District bus tilted sideways and leaning against a tree on a roadside embankment next to Anaheim Hills Golf Course. Police say no other vehicles were involved in the crash.

The driver was trapped inside the bus, and firefighters removed him before he was taken to the hospital.

Witness Andrea Shurtz, one of many people driving nearby who saw the crash, said the bus was going very fast when it hit a curb and appeared to go airborne.

"It came flying down the hill," Shurtz told KABC-TV, "and took out trees along the way."

Shurtz said the driver and several students were hanging out of the bus's windows and yelling for help from passing drivers.

"Kids were screaming. Gas was pouring out the back," Shurtz said. "People just came running from everywhere."

The bus was equipped with seat belts, police said, but it wasn't clear how many of the students were wearing them at the time of the crash.

The California Highway Patrol will take over the investigation. There is no immediate word on the cause.

The crash was in Anaheim Hills, an affluent community within the city of Anaheim about 10 miles east of Disneyland and 30 miles southeast of downtown Los Angeles.

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richagrig April 25 2014 at 5:40 AM

Moron driver. Sorry for the kids. There has to be stricter laws for child care givers and anyone who has children in their responsibility like school employees, workers. The system is lazy like the morons who hold the positions

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4 replies
sunnydayetime April 25 2014 at 8:04 AM

Old man driver, may have had a heart attack, or drug interaction. In Houston ted oberg is concerned about cab drivers with past records, The real problem is Cheap companys. You get what you pay for. It is a wonder they speak english. Do you want good drivers? Pay a good driver price. They will be waiting at the door when you get to work. I don't care, I am a Boiler man. I am retired and happy to have a part time job.

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ANITA**h0td0g** April 24 2014 at 11:25 PM

I drove a school bus for 17 years before I retired. Some busses do go fast let me tell u if u are on an interstate and doing 50 mph u will be blown off.. we are allowed to go the speed limit which is different in places but interstates are most 70 mph.. and the seat belt they are in the special ed busses and are required to be buclkled. there is a aid on the bus to make sure.. the driver can not watch kids seatbelts and road at the same time.. we would do our best to keep the smaller ones up front.. the seat belts can be a weapon against kids.. and the seat backs are so high..to prevent whip lash.. that u cant see the kids.. it takes less than 3 sec to have an accidernt...cars will cut in front of a bus thinking they will save 5 sec on their trip to work... the air brakes as far as I know are on all busses and yes u let the air out when u exit the bus. it will not move until the air pressure is built up.. and u can pull the little yellow air break knob while u are moving an a good serviced bus will come to a smooth stop where as u slam on ur breks then u have kids all over the place. I think each parent should be required to ride a bus for one week then they would see just what a bus driver does..btw u think we drive to school park and work or what ever then drive back let me tell u we were on duty from the time we steped on the bus till we steped off and parked for the night.. we had to keep and eye and ear on the weather etc to be able to leave at a moment notice to go back to school................ I loved my bus kids too.....

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2 replies
nstructurestudio ANITA**h0td0g** April 24 2014 at 11:40 PM

I drove transit and charter bus for 25 years. Buses and big trucks are a lot more complex than an automobile. There are many things that happen that can cause and accident. Yes, it could be inattention by the driver but it could have been a medical emergency or a mechanical failure. Lets at least allow the investigation to determine a cause before we start guessing who was at fault.

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Elizabeth ANITA**h0td0g** April 25 2014 at 7:06 AM

Most parents did ride buses when they were in school.

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JTalltrees1 April 25 2014 at 4:43 AM

What the hell is wrong with the bus drivers in california?????????????

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Ginny April 24 2014 at 10:32 PM

I understand some of the previous comments are meant to stir up trouble, so I will ignore them completely. 90% of the public is uneducated on what operating a school bus is about. It might interest you to look into it before you pump out negative comments on a subject you know nothing about. I have been driving for 7 years...yes, we are responsible for all the kids...yes, we receive thorough training from a certified school bus driver trainer, as well as testing by CHP. Yes, we have extensive background checks and health physicals, drug testing, etc. YES, we drive an 11 ton vehicle (not a "tin can") with up to 84 rowdy students, and manipulate through all kinds of traffic, people cutting us off, speeding around us, etc...all with our back turned to our young passengers. We don't have time to be on a phone...no one could hear us anyways!!! Yes, we have some older drivers, who must have physicals every six months. Anyone can have a heart attack...25 years old die from them. And the seatbelts on buses controversy? Well, I can tell you this...in this accident, I believe it was good that they were wearing them (but we as drivers cannot MAKE them do it). There are some instances where they would be very dangerous...but Im personally glad they are putting them in the new buses. Please have some empathy for bus drivers. We make very little, work a split shift, and school districts do not classify us as full time, so we pay way more for health benefits ( I pay 932.00 monthly for one person) I really like it, and Im very safe, but accidents happen. They will pull the video on the bus, believe me....but I hope this man recovers, and of course, the students.

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2 replies
mestranger2all Ginny April 24 2014 at 10:51 PM

please you are not the only one with a job that could put peoples safety at risk and get little in return for keeping them that way. Buss driver is a job choice I guess one may say career choice but it was made by you with the training you say you go through then you knew the hardships of everyday driving and you still remained. I am constantly seeing school busses going way to fast and the weird part its near the school they are servicing and I have also seen them drive right pass the crossing guard who is a senior citizen and has no time to dodge it . Bus drivers are not angels they get to complacent behind the wheel and that is a problem I would want the responsibility to much a pressure on ones back when working.

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snhhert Ginny April 24 2014 at 11:04 PM

I see drivers in the deer valley district driving too fast and not using turn signals. I really don't know how they got a CDL. And yes I do have a CDL so I know something about it.

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Lonnie JR April 25 2014 at 7:52 AM

The driver was trapped inside the bus, and firefighters removed him before he was taken to the hospital.
So glad they did not take the bus to the hospital........

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2 replies
Lonnie JR Lonnie JR April 25 2014 at 7:55 AM

sorry, i had not read the other comments B-4 posting,
I guess I was thinking like others,
Have A GREAT DAY to ALL !!!!!!!!!!

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poll100 Lonnie JR April 25 2014 at 8:57 AM

They meant they had to hospitailize him and not release him to go home or he wasn't declared dead.

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israelkickbum April 25 2014 at 7:43 AM

Crazy not having guard rails there and why was School Bus speeding. The driver was nuts.

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Elizabeth April 25 2014 at 7:01 AM

Buses, unlike horses, do not jump of their own volition.

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Ah Shucks April 24 2014 at 10:48 PM

No texting and driving at the same time, it will kill you.

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snhhert April 24 2014 at 11:01 PM

The driver was removed BEFORE he was taken to the hospital? That makes sense.
Poor kids. Scary accident.

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